Having read the article penned by Randall Beard of Nielsen.com and published on B&T, Kirsty Dollisson, general manager of outdoor media company and shopper experts, TorchMedia, felt compelled to draw attention to a number points, and offer a different perspective on the consumer engagement debate.
As Beard points out, some shoppers are minimally engaged while grocery shopping, and don’t tend to make considered purchases. Their choices are highly driven by what they have purchased in the past. In fact, TorchMedia’s recent eye tracking study (Hoop Group in 2014) which was conducted to determine the visibility of their in-store formats revealed a segment of shoppers that can be described in exactly this way. We call them ‘Mission Shoppers’.
The study also revealed two additional segments that are not mentioned in Beard’s article; The Specials Seeker and The Explorer.
The Specials Seeker spends more time reviewing their options on shelf, but decisions are ultimately driven by price promotions. The Explorer spends the most time in-store, and is always on the lookout for inspiration and ideas for cooking and eating. This group of shoppers is most likely to allow external factors such as point of sale advertising and sampling to influence their purchasing decision.
Another variable to consider is the difference in shopper behaviour between grocery categories. In the Eye Tracking study, Health and Beauty enjoyed a longer dwell time than snacks, meaning that some brands benefit from longer opportunities to communicate to shoppers than others.
Aztec has conducted over 150 Test and Control studies to assess the impact grocery in-store media has on product sales. Results reveal that it is harder to influence shoppers in commodity categories such as flour, toilet paper etc, however there is a growing opportunity to influence shoppers on their ‘Dinner Tonight’ shopping trip, when they are likely on the lookout for meal solutions and inspiration.
There is no doubt that brands only have a small window to communicate to shoppers in store. This highlights the importance of standing out in the aisle. Eye-catching creative advertising and making sure product packaging is on point becomes more important as attention spans become shorter.